The Alexandria University Research Enhancement Program (ALEX REP)

The Alexandria University Research Enhancement Program (ALEX REP)

What is ALEX REP?

Alexandria University has established in 2007 a research enhancement program under the name (ALEX REP) which is a modest funding mechanism aimed at providing small research grants to researchers in the university. Funds are made available to the program through the recently established University Research Support Fund (URSF) which is a self-generated fund by the university's own resources i.e., not from the governmental annual budget. Grants are made available on competitive basis to faculty members according to criteria and guidelines designed by the Alexandria University Research Committee (AURC). Grants are small; up to LE200,000 (the equivalent of approximately US $40,000) per project. Through this program the University has established itself as internal granting body using the university self-generated funds mechanism. More than thirty projects were funded for a total of six million Egyptian pounds since the inception of this program in 2007.

Program Objectives:

The objective of the University small research grants program ALEX REP is to promote and support the production of high-quality; up-to-date and relevant research outputs that could have a positive impact on communities of the Northwestern region of Egypt in general and Alexandria Governorate in particular. Moreover, these funds are intended to help young researchers achieve short- and medium-term research goals that can be accomplished in one to two years. Grants are also intended to enhance the research capacity of the recipient research groups or departments and help provide support for graduate students thesis work. Finally, the ALEX REP grants are not intended as a continuing source of funding for researchers; funded research projects may be seen as seed money to produce data needed for extramural grant applications with local and international funding agencies.

Granting Mechanism:

Grants are peer reviewed and ranked for quality and impact according to criteria and guidelines designed by the Alexandria University Research Committee (AURC). Proposals that make it to the first cut are further screened in an oral session of presentations by the research team members and debated by the AURC Committee members in the presence of invited experts in the relevant scientific fields of the research proposal. Successful applicants will be required to rewrite their proposals in light of the Committee remarks, suggestions and concerns and re-negotiate their requested project budgets.

Monitoring and Evaluation of Research Projects

The AURC Committee has established a scientific monitoring system to evaluate projects progress and to provide technical support to researchers. Through this system, a Monitoring Technical Advisor (MTA) who is usually a professor at AU in the relevant field is assigned to the project from the outset to provide expert advice to the AURC on the technical progress of projects. The MTA will make regular visits to the project team, read and assess the progress reports, approve the purchase and acquisition of equipment, provide technical input to projects as deemed necessary, recommend time extensions when judged as needed,

Administrative and Financial Support for Research Projects

Grants, Innovation and technology Transfer Center (GITTC) is responsible to provide admin/finance support for the research grants. GITTC assist the project Director in submission of invoices, vouchers, bids and obtaining approvals of grant modifications. The contract of the grant is signed by President of Alexandria University, the Principle investigator and Executive Manager of Grants, Innovation and Technology Transfer Center.

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